Training Your Dog to Be a “Good Dog”

Dogs are passionate creatures that wear their hearts on their metaphorical sleeves. They care deeply for their owners and aim to please them as often as possible. Taking a dog to training classes is one of the best ways for owners to teach their dog what makes them happy. This allows the dog to learn their owner and become a better pet.

One of the ways that dogs try to make their owners happy is through protecting them. This sounds great, until it is late at night, and the dog “protects” the family by barking constantly at all the noises throughout the night. This type of protection is not what most homeowners want. Taking the dog to training courses helps the dog to understand the type of protection the owner truly would like.

What makes training effective is the time spent teaching the dog exactly what the owner wants from them. Thus, a dog can become a “good dog” and the owner can be happy with their canine friend. Though a dog may not quite be able to understand the reasoning behind why barking through the night is not good, teaching the beautiful beast what is good, helps them to focus on ways they can please their master.

Betty S. Egger is a retired dog trainer who spent twenty years training dogs. Though she mainly sticks to training the pets of her close friends and family, Egger answers questions for those who come to her wanting to learn some of her expertise. Egger lives with her five dogs in Mercer Island, WA.

Why “Leave it” is the Most Important Command to Teach Your Dog

“Leave it” is the most important command to teach your dog, followed closely by “come.” The reason that “leave it” is so important is because it keeps your dog from eating dangerous foreign objects on the sidewalk or at the dog park. It can keep you and your dog out of trouble in many potentially dangerous situations. Dogs and humans share many diseases, including leptospirosis, a very unpleasant disease caused by parasites that humans can catch from dogs. Dogs contract this disease from feces and dirty water. While most dogs don’t eat poop, they may eat something that has come in contact with infected feces and pass it on to you. Dogs can also contract lepto from drinking contaminated water. The best way to avoid these infections is to tell your dog to “leave it” when you see your dog sniffing at something unclean.

“Leave it” can also prevent dangerous confrontations between your dog and other animals. Dogs are often interested in wild city animals such as raccoons and squirrels. Most dogs will chase house cats they see as well. The “leave it” command can get your dog away from potentially dangerous meetings between your dog and a raccoon or house cat.

Betty S. Egger spent twenty years teaching dogs and dog owners the power of “leave it” from her business on Mercer Island, Washington. She says that “leave it” was the first command she taught clients how to use on their dogs when they came to her for dog training. She continues to be involved in the dog-lover community, volunteering for various no-kill shelters in the greater Seattle area.